Emma O’Hearn and Antania Mills Murders: What Happened to William Vincent Brown?

Investigation Discovery’s ‘Dead of Night: Back From the Dead’ follows the heinous crimes of the potential serial rapist who haunted the streets of Baltimore from 2003 to 2008 and was potentially linked to the rape and murder of multiple victims. 15-year-old Antania Mills and Emma O’Hearn, 25, were two of his victims, for which the perpetrator pleaded guilty in 2008.

How Did Emma O’Hearn and Antania Mills Die?

Emma O’Hearn had a tragic life since the tender age of 10. Her family described her as kind and caring, but all that changed when she was raped by her grandfather during an overnight stay. Emma’s aunt, Ruth Pool, recounted, “A nurse called me and said that somebody raped your niece. I just said, ‘What?’ She told a stranger on the street, and they called the police.” DNA evidence helped police catch his grandfather, and he was convicted and sentenced to two years probation.

Image Credit: srwenzel/Find A Grave

However, Emma’s family claimed the heinous crime pushed her into a whirling path of addiction and self-destruction, and she ended up being homeless and a sex worker. Emma’s mother, Joyce Heinonen, stated, “I tried to warn her. I told her it was dangerous. But she would say, ‘Mom, it’s easy money.'” According to the show, 25-year-old Emma got lost while trying to find a friend’s apartment in Baltimore, Maryland, on June 13, 2003, at around 12:20 am. A group of students found her the next morning on the rear side of Calverton Middle School at around 11:30 am.

Police records showed that she was beaten, raped, and her head had been bashed against a concrete parking block and left to die. Her aunt, Ruth, lamented, “There was a footprint on the side of her head. I was just beside myself. The police said someone had literally stomped her head into the stoop.” Emma went into a coma, and her brain swelled so much that the doctors had to remove a part of her skull to relieve the pressure caused by swelling. She never recovered and died in the hospital on January 20, 2004, after spending seven months in a coma.

15-year-old Antiona (or Antania) Mills was out shopping with her grandmother on March 7, 2004, at around 6:15 pm. Her mother, Annette Mills-Coner, reminisced how she had her baby girl three days after Christmas and called Antiona “her everything.” Her brother, Megeal Mills, recounted, “Antiona was a happy person. She loved singing and dancing. She was in the Baltimore Westsiders marching band. She was actually one of the best performers that they had. She had won all kinds of awards.”

Hence, it shocked the family when Antiona’s grandmother called Annette late at night and asked her if her granddaughter had returned home. She said Antiona had separated from her to buy some more stuff and was going to take the bus home. Her family searched for the teen girl, driving all around the city, and filed a missing person report.

Antiona’s body was found on the morning of March 8 by joggers, around 12 hours after her family had reported her missing. The 15-year-old had bruises all over her body, making the police believe she had been pushed out of a moving car. Her body was found naked and tied in bedsheets, with a belt tied around her ankles with the sheet. She had been brutally raped and strangled to death.

Who Killed Emma O’Hearn and Antania Mills?

The brutal rape and murder of Emma and Antiona were preceded by the discovery of a woman lying unconscious in Leakin Park, off 900 block of Roberts Avenue, on April 13, 2003, at around 1:20 am. The young woman was dumped about 50 feet from the road, but a maintenance crew had fortunately found her and called the authorities, thus saving her life. She had been brutally beaten, raped, strangled, and her ears were almost chewed off.

The police found a credit card on her, and she was identified as Windy (or Wendy) Davis, then 26. She was rushed to the local hospital, and the woman immediately slipped into a coma. The investigators conducted a rape kit, and DNA was obtained from the vaginal swab. However, the DNA did not get a hit on the national database or CODIS. As Windy stayed in a coma and the police had no evidence to go on, the case eventually turned cold.

The police found Emma’s raped and battered body on June 13, 2003, exactly two months after the incident. The modus operandi of the crime matched Windy’s, and a comparative analysis of the rape kits concluded the perpetrator was the same individual. As the police began to search for a potential serial rapist, the two victims lay in deep comas and were unable to provide any clues to the detectives. Eventually, Emma succumbed to her injuries, but Windy kept fighting.

Meanwhile, the serial rapist struck again after eight months when 15-year-old Antiona’s body was found on March 8, 2004. The police found the DNA of her erstwhile boyfriend and one of his friends on the belt tied around her ankles. But they were ruled out as suspects when the DNA found inside the teen matched that of the perpetrator in Emma and Windy’s cases. The serial rapist remained quiet for more than four years, following which four more women were found raped, strangled, and dead in Baltimore.

As these incidents were eerily similar to the cases four years ago, the Baltimore Examiner published a detailed investigative series on the killing spree. As the newspapers hit the stand, it compelled one citizen to come forward – Windy Davis. The brave survivor had to undergo multiple therapy sessions and surgeries to recover over the years. She gave valuable insight and clues to the police, as they finally found a match on the DNA evidence discovered on all three victims – William Vincent Brown, a bus driver and a father of four.

William Vincent Brown is Serving His Sentence Today

According to the episode, William’s DNA was found on CODIS after he was recently arrested in 2008 in a neighboring county on minor drug charges. He initially pleaded not guilty, but Windy’s testimony in court in March 2011 was enough for the jurors to convict him on rape and attempted murder charges. He entered an Alford plea in March 2011 in the murder cases, acknowledging that the state had enough evidence to convict him. The court sentenced him to life in prison with all but 50 years suspended.

According to official court records, Vincent, in his late-50s, is serving his sentence at the North Branch Correctional Institution in Cresaptown, Maryland. He will be eligible for parole after 25 years. However, the judge noted, “That’s just parole eligibility. He will present a very bleak picture for the parole board to consider. The law now recognizes you (William) as a killer and rapist. You now go to jail to deal with that.”

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